Scattering property based contextual PolSAR speckle filter

Adugna G. Mullissa, Valentyn Tolpekin, Alfred Stein

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Reliability of the scattering model based polarimetric SAR (PolSAR) speckle filter depends upon the accurate decomposition and classification of the scattering mechanisms. This paper presents an improved scattering property based contextual speckle filter based upon an iterative classification of the scattering mechanisms. It applies a Cloude-Pottier eigenvalue-eigenvector decomposition and a fuzzy H/α classification to determine the scattering mechanisms on a pre-estimate of the coherency matrix. The H/α classification identifies pixels with homogeneous scattering properties. A coarse pixel selection rule groups pixels that are either single bounce, double bounce or volume scatterers. A fine pixel selection rule is applied to pixels within each canonical scattering mechanism. We filter the PolSAR data and depending on the type of image scene (urban or rural) use either the coarse or fine pixel selection rule. Iterative refinement of the Wishart H/α classification reduces the speckle in the PolSAR data. Effectiveness of this new filter is demonstrated by using both simulated and real PolSAR data. It is compared with the refined Lee filter, the scattering model based filter and the non-local means filter. The study concludes that the proposed filter compares favorably with other polarimetric speckle filters in preserving polarimetric information, point scatterers and subtle features in PolSAR data.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)78-89
JournalInternational Journal of Applied Earth Observation and Geoinformation (JAG)
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2017


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